Today VMware has announced the new network virtualization product VMware NSX. How cool is that name by the way?
Now normally I dont write articles on the new products we announce (excluding vCloud Director related), but if anyone watched my Chinwag with Mike Laverick, I find this one of particular interest. My personal opinion is that this is the next major wave of virtualization, and VMware is at the forefront of the technology again. Back in the day when I was a Windows NT 3rd Line Engineer, I got involved in networking a lot more, even passing my CCNA (dont ask me a single question about it, I have forgotten more than I learnt) but I have always found the networking side of the datacenter infrastructure interesting. Now I am no Kamau Wanguhu, but I know a thing or two about networking, so this technology for me is of awesome interest.
Anyway, enough about me and my opinions (read more below), the full VMware NSX Network Virtualization announcement can be found by clicking here.
A quick snippet from the article:
Networking is stuck in the past
It wasn’t that long ago when provisioning server resources for an application was manual, time consuming, hardware dependent, error prone, and grossly inefficient. As with many computer science problems, the solution to this inefficiency was automation through software abstraction – enabled by server virtualization. The release of VMware ESX paved the way for enterprises to rapidly deploy any application on any server, non-disruptively, by enabling the fundamental abstraction of servers from hardware – creating the virtual machine. Through server virtualization software, application servers are encapsulated into virtual machines, and programmatically deployed with APIs on top generalized pools of CPU and memory resources. The first important step toward the software defined data center.
What I find so interesting about this and the future of networking is how the datacenter boundaries are now being eroded away, and we no longer have these physical restrictions and limitations placed on us as Architects and Administrators. How cool is the future thought that we no longer need to worry about where all our hosts are physically located, or worry about us having more than 4096 VLANs. Of course the physical network can never go away, but by virtualizing, a lot of the complexity sure does! Some of this has already been addressed with cloud, but this is the next exciting step in the (VMware phrase) Software Defined Datacenter. Now I cannot wait to find out how and what Storage Virtualization is going to do to the world…